Why do I need my website translated?

An increasing number of businesses are looking into website translation and website localisation.  Website localisation basically describes the process whereby a skilled translator will not only translate the content, but adapt it to the target market and its culture.

Website translation can be an excellent way of growing a company’s customer base and very cost effective growth strategy, with the right translation partner.  In this article we will look to uncover some of the statistics around Internet use, the current research surrounding website translation, and investigate a case study from a Canadian manufacturer who underwent the process.

Changing Internet – demographic shift

In 2011 32.7% of the World population was online and only 14% of global internet users were based in the UK and US (Internet World Stats 2011).  It is interesting to note that most internet users are now located in Asia (45%).  As many as 32.7% of the World population are now online (Internet World Stats 2011) – a massive business opportunity.  At the time of writing, China’s middle class, an affluent, aspirational group, numbered almost 200 million. This group is soon projected to outnumber the entire population of the United States.

Top Export Opportunities

The top five export markets for the UK are hardly surprising, as you can see below, and they are easy to export to, with excellent transport links and similar cultures.

The top 5 exporters in 2011

Export Top 5

For the more adventurous exporter, new markets have opened up in the EU and are growing year on year.  Coupled with economic growth in the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa), there are a wealth of new global opportunities that companies can seize, with the right approach.

Why translate a website?  The stats.

•    40% of companies do not target overseas markets because their website is in their native language.  Translating a website helps businesses gain competitive advantage – competitors have often not yet translated their website.
•    When a product or service is promoted in a target language, the number of purchases and revenue increases, according to the French website expert-tourism.
•    A survey under taken by Eurobarometre regarding the linguistic preference of internet users, showed that most European Internet users visit foreign websites, but only 18% are willing to make purchases in a languages other than their own.
•    According to a Common Sense Advisory study made in 2006, 50% of the customers buy only from websites sites translated into their mother tongue.

Case Study

A Canadian company Group Anderson situated in Chesterville in Quebec, benefited tangibly from investing in website translation.  The company, which employs over 100 people, is well known in North America for its agricultural and forestry products.

The company invested $5,000 to translate its website into Polish, Russian and German. In the year following the website translation, the company experienced major growth in exports to Eastern Europe.  This led to a huge turnover increase of $3 million in just one year, which represented an excellent return on investment of just $5,000.

Conclusion

Considering the global  reach of the Internet, it’s crucial for any forward thinking business to consider a multilingual website. Not only will this open doors to potential clients, it will also  be a magnet  for international partners and distributors. All this can be achieved without excessive investment as we saw from the Anderson Group example.

A multilingual website can only add value for your organisation. When the language barrier is broken, the access to international markets broadens, bringing more customers and therefore higher revenue.  The advent of broadband has accelerated global communication beyond what previously seemed possible.  In a similar way, the adoption of a multilingual approach can take your business to the next level. Why limit your target market when you could be taking your message to the world?

From a business perspective, with the right translation partner, your website localisation project can be an excellent investment and route to growth.

Wolfestone has proven track of record of continuous success and has experienced translators in almost every sector.  Contact us for a quote!

Sources:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2010/feb/24/uk-trade-exports-imports
http://www.experts-tourisme.fr/avantages-traduction-b1036185.htm
http://www.fep.umontreal.ca/traduction/Affaires110521.pdf

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